Category Archives: Litigation

Target Corporation Hit with Spoliation Charge

On June 27, 2013, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals ruled that Target Corporation had improperly destroyed evidence in a lawsuit involving a customer who had purchased an air mattress, but instead received a box containing harmful chemicals.  See, Cody v. Target Corp., 2013 Wisc. App. LEXIS 545 (Wisc. Ct. App. June 27, 2013).  The customer, Cheryl Cody, claimed that she had returned the box to Target and informed the company that it had made her and her family physically ill.  Despite this notice of injury,…

Continue Reading....

EEOC Files GINA Class Action against New York Skilled Nursing Home Operator

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) recently filed a class action against The Founders Pavilion, Inc, a skilled nursing and rehabilitation center in Corning, New York, pursuant to the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act of 2008 (“GINA”).  This law prohibits employers from using genetic information of an employee or their family members in employment and health insurance decisions.  For example, employers cannot deny coverage to healthy individuals or charge higher premiums due solely to the fact that the individual is genetically predisposed to a…

Continue Reading....

Manufacturer Avoids Breach of Warranty Claims for Gifted Products

On June 3, 2013, United States District Court Judge Mark W. Bennett ruled that Abbott Laboratories could not be held liable for claims of breach of warranty for injuries allegedly caused by its Similac brand baby formula.  See, The Security National Bank of Sioux City IA v. Abbott Laboratories, 5:11-cv-04017 (N.D. Ia. June 3, 2013).  As part of its marketing strategy, Abbott had donated the product to various hospitals, including St. Luke’s in Sioux City Iowa.  In 2008, St. Luke’s provided a new mother with…

Continue Reading....

General Mills Prevails In Putative Class Action Lawsuit

The maker of a wide variety of food products, General Mills, was named as the defendant in a putative class action lawsuit in August 2012.  The foundation for the class action lawsuit was the contention that the food manufacturer misrepresented and deceptively marketed its Nature Valley granola products by claiming they were “all natural.”  According to the plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit, Nature Valley granola products were made using a wide variety of non-natural ingredients, such as high fructose corn syrup.  All the…

Continue Reading....

Energy Drink Maker’s Attempt To Dismiss Class Action Suit Crashes

The plaintiff claimed he did not receive an immediate bolt of energy after ingesting the 5-hour ENERGY drink made by Innovation Ventures LLC.  Moreover, when the drink finally “kicked in,” the effects only lasted for 30 minutes.  Subsequently, he experienced a “crash,” in addition to dizziness, nausea, and headaches. The plaintiff alleges the drink maker deceptively advertised its product by promising “Hours of energy now – No crash later,” or “Feel it in minutes.” Innovation Ventures LLC attempted to dismiss the proposed class action by…

Continue Reading....

Inaccurate Calorie Counts May Cost Nike and Apple Millions in Damages

Sports apparel giant, Nike, and electronic juggernaut, Apple, were recently named in a proposed class action lawsuit in California.  The proposed class action lawsuit stems from claims made in advertisements about an electronic fitness bracelet that was part of a joint venture between Apple and Nike.  According to the complaint, the bracelet was advertised as a device that could accurately track a wide array of fitness information, including the number of calories a user burns during the day.  The plaintiff in the…

Continue Reading....

New York State Labor Law Decision Reaffirms Need for Property Owners to Protect Themselves through Insurance and Contracts

A recent decision in the Supreme Court of the State of New York, New York County, has affirmed that in the State of New York, the owner of a piece of property is responsible for the safety of construction workers there, regardless of how removed the owner is from the actual work being performed.  The suit, In Re 91st Street Crane Collapse Litigation: Xhevahire Sinanaj and Selvi Sinanovic v. The City of New York et al., Supreme Court of the State of New…

Continue Reading....

NY Judge: Affidavit Testimony Not Enough To Prove Company Did Not Manufacture Asbestos Containing Products

In two separate actions, Justice Sherry Klein Heitler recently denied summary judgment to defendants that offered affidavits that they did not manufacture the products which plaintiffs had identified as a source of their asbestos exposure. In Meyer v. A.O. Smith Water Products Co. (No. 190094/2012, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.), defendant, Columbia Boiler Company, moved for summary judgment on the grounds that it did not manufacture scotch marine boilers in the 1980s or 1990s, when plaintiff alleged he had worked on them.  In support…

Continue Reading....

Class Action Lawsuit against Fannie Mae and KPMG Settles For $153 Million

Mortgage giant Fannie Mae and the international accounting firm KPMG, LLP recently agreed to settle a shareholder class action lawsuit for $153 million.  The class action lawsuit, which began back in 2004, claimed Fannie Mae and KPMG issued misleading financial statements that regularly manipulated earning figures in order to minimize fluctuations and meet compensation goals for senior executives.  The U.S. Securities Exchange Commission launched an investigation into Fannie Mae’s accounting practices that ultimately resulted in the mortgage company being forced to restate its earnings for…

Continue Reading....

Deep Trouble in Deepwater Case: Former BP Engineer Must Turn over Emails to Lawyer after Waiving Privilege

A Louisiana federal judge presiding over the case against Kurt Mix, a former BP PLC engineer accused of destroying evidence related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, has ordered Mix to provide the Department of Justice with emails he sent to his attorney and attorney notes from a meeting with BP officials.  Kurt Mix has been charged with obstruction of justice.  The Department of Justice claims that Mix tried to interfere with grand jury proceedings investigating the Deepwater Horizon oil spill by deleting text messages…

Continue Reading....